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Webcast competition
Talk about English - Webcast

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Shakespeare's language Thursday, June 07, 2007

Shakespeare created many new words and phrases. You can see a rough list of English words recorded as being first used by Shakespeare here*.

We'd like you to invent a word that doesn't exist in English but you think should exist! Consider using affixes such as un-, dis-, -logy, -ism etc. to create your new word, and give us an example sentence using the word.

We'll feature as many entries as we can on this page, but there can only be one winner!

This competition has now closed.

The Winner

We had several marvellous entries but after careful deliberation the prize goes to Mikuru Nakae from Japan. Congratulations Mikuru!

You can see our comments underneath Mikuru's entry, below:

The new word I invented1 is DISPARROT. It simply means 'to be quiet' or 'stop gossiping'.

Example: Would you please disparrot? I'm reading a book.

And it also has the meaning of 'thinking seriously by oneself'.2

Example: Disparroting should be scholars' responsibility3

Our comments
Everyone in the Learning English team enjoyed this entry very much, Mikuru. We love its humour and the fact that you have gone to the trouble of creating two meanings for your word. But in fact, you have invented a word that could easily exist - parrots are known for talking nonsense, so 'to parrot' could mean 'to gossip'. In context, a native speaker would guess what you meant by this, so if you like you can start spreading its use!

In fact, 'to parrot' is occasionally used as a transitive verb, and it means to repeat something without really understanding what you are saying, e.g.

He doesn't know a thing about tennis - he just parrots what he reads in the paper

This might come close to being an antonym (a word with an opposite meaning) to your second definition of 'disparrot'.

1: This would be better in the present perfect: The word I've invented...
2: We think you might mean 'to think for oneself'. If you do something by yourself, you do it alone. We don't tend to say 'to think by oneself' because we can never think with other people. However, we can say 'to be by oneself and think' or simply, 'to reflect quietly'. If you think for yourself, it means that you come up with your own ideas and opinions and don't just believe what you hear from other people.
3: This should be: Disparroting should be every scholar's responsibility or possibly
A scholar's duty is to disparrot

Runners Up

Tom from Poland:
Tom uploaded an audio file of himself defining chat-chat and marketholic. What can they mean?

Download Tom's definition (234 KB)

Marion Scott from the UK:
I think 'forgettery' should exist as a word. It is/should be the opposite of memory. An example would be, My forgettery is working better than my memory.

Khadidja Bensaadi from Algeria:
The coinage I made is a verb "to laufeep" / la:fi:p / from 'to laugh' and 'to weep'.

Sometimes our emotions are mixed up and we laugh and weep at the same time so suggest this verb to express this feeling
Example: For her surprise she started to laufeep, she didn't believe she won the prize.

Silvia Ceragiolo from Italy:
This is my coinage:
unfridged = (adj.) without a fridge.

They gave me an unfridged room. So, when I am thirsty I have to call the reception for a bottle of cold water
50 years ago people were unfridged. During the summer they had to buy fresh food almost everyday, because it was impossible to store it at home.

Tarek Karouaz from Algeria:
My coined word is 'to bibrocate'. Bibrocate: learn and improve one's English with the BBC.

Eg: My friend's English improved remarkably since he listens to my advice to bibrocate
Sibi Marcos:
'calping': the noises of the birds especially in the twilight time of the day.

When the dark covered the area with its woollen black shawl, it was silent except the calping from the far away trees on the hillside.

Antonio Temprano:
Light-tongued: A word to design those adolescents who just can't stay quiet for over than 1 minute.
These light-tongued adolescents wear me out

To netphone: To phone somebody through the Internet, for example using Skype.
I must be off since I have to netphone my girlfriend, who is in Australia on holiday

To cropple: To behave in a environmental friendly way.
All of us should really cropple when we go on a picnic day

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